I met Ramtin in person today! A year and a half ago he was part of our very first group of students. During this time, I’ve felt his highs and lows and finally, he was granted asylum in Spain.
As soon as he had his flight ticket he sent the details to me. He was to arrive in Madrid at 10:35 am, I could go to the airport to welcome him! The night before his journey we exchanged messages and I wished him a good flight.
Today I went to the airport to wait for him. He phoned me from a Spanish phone number and told me he was going to León city, that he wouldn’t stay in Madrid. I reassured him he would be fine there. Then he passed the phone to the social worker from the organisation that will take care of him in his new city. They told me that he was ok, completing the process of his entry to Spain – at the other end of the airport: I ran determined to see him. I phoned again to check where they were: still waiting for the police checks.
They told me there were 7 refugees in Ramtins group and it would take a while. I waited for another hour and phoned again. This time they told me they were outside the airport but they had left by a different door. I asked for directions to their location: I ran, again. In the distance, I could see the bus, and they were about to get on it. Ramtin spotted me from afar and he ran to me! We hugged and smiled. What a moment!
It was so exciting, so emotional, one that will stay with me forever. I was so happy for him! He started telling me that he was going to another city again and that he wanted to stay in Madrid and that he needed to learn the language. I told him he’d be fine and you’ll learn the language, get a job and then you can move to the city where that job is.
We hugged again several times! I met the social workers and exchanged numbers, I told them we had been friends for the last 1.5 year and that he was one of our first students. The caseworkers were excited to see us meet. It was brief and all too soon they left, but it was enough to see him, make him feel welcome.
We’ll meet again soon I’m sure.